Mount Guiting-guiting (2,058 meters above sea level) sits in the middle of Sibuyan Island (some 700 kilometers south of Manila) in the province of Romblon. It derives its name from the word “guiting” which, in the local language, means the teeth of the saw. The saw-like peaks of the mountain are so treacherous that no human, including the indigenous Mangyan tribe who lived this mountain for centuries, has explored the mountain ranges. This made Mount Guiting-guiting famous. It’s the sour graping of humans that made it so attractive.
The Island of Sibuyan, home to Mount Guiting-guiting, is also famous for another thing. It is the Galapagos of Asia. The island is separated from the landmass from its formation. As such, it benefits from being unique–including unique flora and fauna. It is home to species of birds, fruit bats, mammals, reptiles, and rodents that are yet to be classified. The island also boasts of species of trees that are not found anywhere else.
Photographing the majestic Mount Guiting-guiting is an exercise of patience. When I arrived at Poblacion Magdiwang, at the foot of the mountain, thick clouds covered the peak. It was also raining heavily that afternoon. After some 5 hours of waiting late in the afternoon, the clouds opened up to reveal Mount Guiting-guiting. The setting sun caressed the mountain tops with its warm glow. This happened in only about 5 minutes before the sun finally called it a day and set over the horizon. The 5-minute window did not escape my camera. Before the clouds opened up for the sun to come in, I am ready with my camera mounted on a tripod, ready to shoot anytime. I only made minor adjustments to compensate for the new exposure.
Louise Pasture once said, “fortune favors the prepared mind.” And I guess, add patience to the recipe and you are sure to go. Patience rewards those who wait.